Intentionality

The Welcome of What Is

There are many rhythms that carry me through daily life and into the presence of God. As a Midwesterner, the four seasons have become a perpetual joy and sometimes annoyance, but a cadence upon which my body, mind, and soul have come to rely.  As an Anglican, the liturgy, Eucharist, and church calendar have carried […]

Why Sex is Worth the Work

In the course of my twenty-five year marriage, we’ve made good sex a priority. That doesn’t mean it’s been effortless. Anything in marriage that’s good takes effort and intentionality. In all regards, we’re still a work in progress. We had more than a few vulnerable conversations about our hopes for the marriage bed before saying […]

Dear Portia: I Had Sex…and then We Broke Up. Now What?

Dear Portia, I grew up in the heart of evangelical purity culture. When I was 13, my parents took me out to dinner and gave me a promise ring. Throughout high school and college, I heard boys would ask me to compromise my sexual standards. I was ready to tell them no, but no one ever […]

The Comfortable Lie

The lie is ingrained so deeply in my heart that I have to make conscious efforts to untangle my life from its clutches. This lie clutters my home, my very soul—the one that says comfort and contentment are one. Life in the Middle East was anything but comfortable, any sense of ease in life gone. […]

When the Word “Holidays” Stresses You Out

You know what my idea of a holiday is? A normal day. Laundry, hanging with my kids, and, by 9:30 pm, watching a murder mystery with my husband while I eat raisin bran. Even better: doing all that in slippers. Normal days are easy. On a normal day, I have a routine. I know what’s […]

Sometimes I Leave the Room

I can’t take it. I walk outside and text my husband to see when he would be back to pick me up. “Leaving now,” he writes. Soon, then. Thankfully. I don’t want to feel this way, like I have to leave a room when good, well-meaning people talk about people in poverty. I don’t want […]

Crossing the Skies and Seas

What would you give up to finally have running water in your house? Would you give up your spring break? Would you fly into a winter storm and ride an open boat on the ocean in 8 degrees holding your pregnant belly and hugging your three small children, cinching them close to keep from freezing? […]

Space to Breathe

I hear it. My soul, breathing. Nestled in a rocker that’s held its place on the wide, teal-painted porch chipped with life and history, it sighs as I stare at a carpet of rich greenery, forest tips of trees leading to the cut of Smoky Mountains. Blue silhouettes brush the sky drifting lightly pastel pink […]

Why I Live in a Yurt, Off the Grid, in Idaho; Or: The Empty Space

Everything that ever needed to happen to me happened by accident. I don’t know if this is just my personality. Or if it is a deep truth that penetrates the whole world. But in my experience, intentional living isn’t particularly intentional.  It’s been almost five years since my husband and I closed on a little […]